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Old 04-28-2003, 03:00 PM   #1 (permalink)
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religions

Since religion tends to come up in some threads, whether part of the original post or not, I thought it would be nice to see what everyone thinks of religion. Why do you hate it? why do you like it? Are religious/what religion are you? Things like that.

I myself used to be Christian, but I gave it up because of the people in the church and I didn't have a real steady relationship with God. Since then, I have been studying Wiccan and Buddism. I don't neccessarily hate Christians, or any other religion for that matter. I hate the people in the religion that are self rightous (bad spelling habits) and think that anyone that doesn't believe the way they do, they will go to hell or their sould will be tortured for all eternity. I don't mean to pick on Christians in general and no offense to the ones here that are, but most Christians that have come up to me and asked me if I believe in God and then tell me I'm going to hell because I don't, I have a problem with them. But I have also been demeaned and cursed for being Christian when I was.

Religion isn't as hunky dory as some people make it out to be. I sometimes wonder if the world would be better without religion.
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Old 04-28-2003, 03:10 PM   #2 (permalink)
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i hate religion, but i'm pretty open minded.
i dont hate people that practice it (although deep inside i think they're all stupid)

all religion has brought to this world is intolerance and bloodshed.

a shitload of people have died in the name of religion

this quote describes my well

"" [God] is the creation of ignorant and frightened humans in need of explanation to the fundamental quagmire of their existance."

and i'm not ignorant or frightened.

anyway, i dont hate anyone that practice religion. it's your life and you have the right do whatever you want w/ it and i dont think me or anybody else has the right to tell u what to do.
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Old 04-28-2003, 03:14 PM   #3 (permalink)
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i don't like religion because anyone could have made it up back in the day. people were retarded as far as being aware of their surroundings and i see no reason to follow what they believed.

i also don't like religion because it makes people followers instead of leaders. So instead of having a country full of people that contribute to the advancement of society, we have a country full of sheep.
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Old 04-28-2003, 03:23 PM   #4 (permalink)
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i hate the fact that a _lot_ of evil is done in religions name. but if religion didn't exist, people would create another name to control people under.

I am a maverick christian. my ego tells me to title myself as a Real Christian. I have only found one church , ever, that believes most of what i believe. Baptist/methodist/catholic/lutheran/ church of god/ asymbly of god..... i can't fly with them.

anybody who's more prepared to teach you about torment and hellfire should stay away from you. Yes, there is punishment, but Jesus is a great d00d. he is the ultimate peace hippy. I love him for it, too.

keep your minds open and have fun
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Old 04-28-2003, 03:24 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I assume you mean organized religion as opposed to simple spirtuality.

Religion has been one of the major forces for good (and evil) on the planet and this should surprise no one since it is composed of people trying to figure out what to believe about God. While doing this, all the good and bad that we have in us has found outlets. There have been noble sacrifices and hideous massacres done in the name of religion (even Buddhists).

Now, the question is, do you blame God and the idea of gathering people to worship Him/Her or do you blame the people who mess it up? Or in my mind, do you throw the baby out with the bath water?

Remember, some of the worst atrocities of the 20th century were performed by individuals and governments who specifically disavowed religion, so you can't claim it is 'religion' or 'God' that drives us to murder, slaughter, and generally be nasty to each other.
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Old 04-28-2003, 03:25 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I like religion in general. It has some amazing concepts and has inspired people to do some amazing and beautiful things. Most religions seem to be comforting and useful forms of philosophy for their believers.
However, obviously, many people use them for the wrong reasons, but I like to think they're usually misunderstanding what the religion is all about.
I personally am an atheist... but that has nothing to do with disliking religion, just with not being able to believe in a god at all.
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Old 04-28-2003, 03:40 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I'm a christian.. but i go to an assembly of god chruch.. does that make me an assembly of god person .. in my mind no.. they hold closest to what i belive in but... I hate all major religious sects... why

they are wrong.. you are to go out in to the world as a christian and teach the word to all. not sit in a pew ...

and above mentiond several times.. about different ways to view christanity... take for instance..

the fact in my small town there are almost 16 baptist chruches... one assembly of god .. now you do the math.. how many baptists see the word of god different
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Old 04-28-2003, 04:51 PM   #8 (permalink)
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AG is a cult. Until you figure that out, you are doomed to lead a co-dependant, miserable existance.

Whoops - that wasn't very tolerant of someone else's views. Well I am not going to erase it since that would not be tolerant of my view.....

Let's just say that The_Dude and I share a very similar viewpoint on religion as I read above. I hope you can break free and oh yeah - the TFP is a sin.
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Old 04-28-2003, 04:57 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I'm agnostic. I've studied many religions throughout my life but I never stuck to one. I took the good teachings from each and applied them to my life. I've come to the conclusion that I will never have a religion because religion is a human construct. I don't believe one religion is right or more right than the other. I believe religion should be personal and be kept to yourself and not be used in influencing government and society nor infringe on other's rights. I don't like evangelism. It's no more than western imperialism trying to take over the world. It destroys cultures. Other than that, I don't have much of problem with religion as long as you don't shove it in my face or infringe on my rights.
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Old 04-28-2003, 05:04 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Mondak,

I don't see anyone here pissing on what you believe, I would appreciate the same courtesy from you.
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Old 04-28-2003, 05:18 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Mondak,

Your views are fine, EXCEPT that you worded them in a way that was derogatory and unnecessarily rude towards others. Ones own personal beliefs are sacred, and are not to be discussed in such a manner.

If you care to give your thoughts in an intelligent manner, please feel free to do so, otherwise just pass by these types of threads.

I wouldn't want anybody to call your beliefs, whatever they might be, to be a cult like activity. Nor would I want that to happen to others in here.

Hopefully anybody continuing in this thread can do this as well.
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Old 04-28-2003, 05:20 PM   #12 (permalink)
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what labell said.

you can explain your views without a large
ammount of animosity and dirt throwing.
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Old 04-28-2003, 05:27 PM   #13 (permalink)
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My religion lies within my own heart. I do not attend any church meetings and I feel no desire to do so. I am a spiritual person with a deep faith in my God.
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Old 04-28-2003, 05:30 PM   #14 (permalink)
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I'm Catholic.

I've found that many people who call themselves religious distrust the Catholic church. Which usually leads to interesting conversations, where the Christian at the table and the non-believer find common ground against the Catholic church.

Lets see - why do I like it? Its a place where you can go, not just once a week but at any time, and find common ground with alot of different people. Its a safe place to bring up young children, with many very good values instilled. Finally, and I'm sure alot of you are going to insert your own joke here, but Catholic priests are very amazing individuals. Many have literally thousands of parishoners - and they are wonderfully understanding, energetic, and helpful. Ever REALLY struggled with something? Try having a guy around who really cares about guiding you (its his job) and is absolutely sworn to secrecy.

Frankly, I'm a little surprised when I see religious topics on TFP. I respect all opinions, but opening up a religious thread tends to invite some *interesting* responses.
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Old 04-28-2003, 05:39 PM   #15 (permalink)
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I take the stance that since no religion can be proven (beyond pre-planned responses to questions that have been asked since religion's beginning, which make conversations with preachers extremely frustrating), I simply won't choose one.

Chances are, when we have a definitive answer to the universe, we still won't be able to wrap our heads around it, so don't bog yourself down with specifics. Just try to live a good life, a life that does something to contribute to the advancement of the human race.

Quote:
Originally posted by The_Dude
i dont hate people that practice it (although deep inside i think they're all stupid)
This kind of statement gives atheists a bad name (although most atheists I've met hold this belief). A person searching for a deeper meaning in life is not a stupid one. A person who completely rules out all religion because the organizations are fucked may be. Don't claim intellectual superiority simply because you have ruled out religion from your universe.

Last edited by frenik; 04-28-2003 at 05:45 PM..
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Old 04-28-2003, 05:58 PM   #16 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by frenik

This kind of statement gives atheists a bad name (although most atheists I've met hold this belief). A person searching for a deeper meaning in life is not a stupid one. A person who completely rules out all religion because the organizations are fucked may be. Don't claim intellectual superiority simply because you have ruled out religion from your universe.
maybe stupid was not the best word of choice.

i just dont see how anyone can believe in something supernatural when they have all this scientific facts pointed against them.

i cant descrbe the feeling in one word, "ignorant" partly gets it done.
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Old 04-28-2003, 06:02 PM   #17 (permalink)
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The_Dude,

What scientific facts point against the existance of God?

Don't be afraid I'll not understand the science behind your facts. I only went to an engineering school for 3 years and worked in analytical chemistry for 5 years.
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Old 04-28-2003, 06:06 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Lebell
The_Dude,

What scientific facts point against the existance of God?

Don't be afraid I'll not understand the science behind your facts. I only went to an engineering school for 3 years and worked in analytical chemistry for 5 years.
i really dont think i'm qualified enough to argue w/ you. (still in high school and suck @ science)

how can they live their lives around something that happened thousands of years ago? they're putting an awful lot of faith on a piece of paper that somebody wrote.
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Old 04-28-2003, 06:09 PM   #19 (permalink)
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I was raised Catholic and as I grew older I struggled with how I felt about religion. I am a scientist at heart and I really am not superstitious at all. Still, I found comfort with religion in many ways, some shallow and some deep. I always figured that someday I would have kids (I am begining to wonder about that now) and I could not imagine raising children without some formal ethical framework. I know people who have done it, but it seems like a daunting task.

I believe that the official teachings of the Catholic Church as they exist today (not all the misunderstandings that one hears from Catholics and non-Catholics alike) make up a self-consistant set of ethics. I can go to church in a country where I do not speak the language and feel instantly at home. My religion is as important to me culturally as it is philosophically.

I don't believe that I have all the answers or that I have been given a secret hall pass from God because I belong to a certain church. I simply know that it works for me, and a lot of other people. I am not threatened by other religions or atheism.

I don't believe that I am stupid or weak for feeling this way. I feel I have come to these conclusions after a great deal of thought and I have been intellectually honest withmyself.
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Old 04-28-2003, 06:20 PM   #20 (permalink)
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The_Dude,

Fortunately, I CAN address the science.

Science is not concerned with God, either to prove or to disprove. Science is concerned with explaining the workings of nature in an observable fashion using experiments that produce repeatable results.

In other words, science is concerned with the "how's" of nature, whereas religion is concerned with the why's.

Since you mention "two thousand years ago", I will make the leap and assume you are talking about Christianity. Well, I happen to call myself such, but I don't believe there was an Adam or an Eve. Surprised? Don't be. It is relatively easy for me and millions of other Christians to seemlessly integrate what we believe through religion with what we know through science.

I also won't be pronouncing that you are going to Hell for not believing as I believe. I believe what I do for my own reasons and everyone has to come to their own reasons.

If you have specific questions about 'something written two thousand years ago', I have more than a passing knowledge of the subject, including who actually wrote what, and why we think so. I can also answer why I believe as I do, but as to others, they will have to answer for themselves.
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Old 04-28-2003, 06:20 PM   #21 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by The_Dude
how can they live their lives around something that happened thousands of years ago? they're putting an awful lot of faith on a piece of paper that somebody wrote.
Many people take comfort in the ideas expressed on the paper, and it makes sense to them. I don't understand the whole Bible thing either, but to call someone ignorant for believing in it is a bit of a stretch and a little arrogant. Most Christians I've met that are knowledgable about their faith argue that the Bible is more of a collection of stories that illustrate the basic principles of the religion, with some history mixed in. Then again, some of them believe that the Bible is a factual account of history.

Furthermore, science doesn't exactly disprove religion, in fact it works with it, depending on your interpretation of the sciences. For example, many Christians have developed the idea that the story of Adam and Eve was a symbolic story rather than an actual event, and that evolution was put into place and controlled by God as part of his plan. Still others stick to the idea that evolution doesn't exist.

I don't believe that anyone is stupid or ignorant because of their beliefs, as long as they are following basic tenets of society (don't kill/steal/make anyone else miserable) and help society in general.
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Old 04-28-2003, 06:26 PM   #22 (permalink)
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The most important thing we do here is not using the site as a platform for our personal views but learning how to share our views with others of different mindsets.

That's a bit of a stretch for all of us, I know. That's the point.
It's easy to just lose your head and type out a rant.
It takes some effort to weigh your views against others with different views and to acknowledge their value even though you may strongly disagree.

Threads like this are good for learning these lessons. Watching them evolve, veer toward unacceptability, get nudged back toward increasing respect for others - that's why we are here.

We're here to learn about ourselves and to improve ourselves through dialog.
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Old 04-28-2003, 06:40 PM   #23 (permalink)
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Very very true, Art.

Thanks for the reminder.
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Old 04-28-2003, 08:26 PM   #24 (permalink)
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Good points fellows - here is try number 2:

Searching for meaning can't really be considered a bad thing. I just tend to be frustrated by folks who look in the wrong places for meaning and don't usually express myself effectivly.

I tend to turn to nature and relationships with others to sort things out and not any kind of religion. Seems to me these things can be more reliable and can teach us far more lessons than what religion has to offer. I have seen very few if any positive outcomes and healthy relationships that are rooted in religion.

As far as the stupid thing is concerned, following anything without question seems pretty stupid and ignorant in any situation. Exploring other possible options can pay very nice dividends for anyone.
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Old 04-28-2003, 09:56 PM   #25 (permalink)
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So far we've had Christians, atheists and agnostics. Are there any members of other religions here?
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Old 04-28-2003, 10:09 PM   #26 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Mondak
Good points fellows - here is try number 2:

Searching for meaning can't really be considered a bad thing. I just tend to be frustrated by folks who look in the wrong places for meaning and don't usually express myself effectivly.

I tend to turn to nature and relationships with others to sort things out and not any kind of religion. Seems to me these things can be more reliable and can teach us far more lessons than what religion has to offer. I have seen very few if any positive outcomes and healthy relationships that are rooted in religion.

As far as the stupid thing is concerned, following anything without question seems pretty stupid and ignorant in any situation. Exploring other possible options can pay very nice dividends for anyone.
Assumption #1)

Other people are looking in the "wrong places for meaning".

Assumption #2)

Other people are following their beliefs "without question".

Care to try a third time?
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Old 04-28-2003, 11:17 PM   #27 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Lebell
Assumption #1)

Other people are looking in the "wrong places for meaning".

Assumption #2)

Other people are following their beliefs "without question".

Care to try a third time?
Ok - now we are getting picky. It is not like I said that EVERYONE was looking in the wrong place, but SOMEONE has to be and those are the folks that tend to frustrate me.

The second point is the same way. We are not working with absolutes here. There are lots of mindless dopes in this world who follow their beliefs without question. When this happens we get planes in the sides of towers and people being thrown in ovens. Not good. Is everyone a mindless dope? no
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Old 04-28-2003, 11:27 PM   #28 (permalink)
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I'm sorry, I can't read your mind.

You said,

"I just tend to be frustrated by folks who look in the wrong places for meaning"

and

"As far as the stupid thing is concerned, following anything without question seems pretty stupid and ignorant in any situation."

While I actually agree with your explanation once given, if that is what you mean, then you should say so. Otherwise, I can only infer that you mean everyone, including the posters in a thread you entered.
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Old 04-29-2003, 12:12 AM   #29 (permalink)
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Let me tell you a little something about God...


God likes to watch.
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Old 04-29-2003, 12:16 AM   #30 (permalink)
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Ok John Milton
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Old 04-29-2003, 03:02 AM   #31 (permalink)
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Lebell,
forgive me for being curious... but how do you see the worlds creation?

btw, i've noticed that things are quite heated in here...this is not intended to be provocative.
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Old 04-29-2003, 03:38 AM   #32 (permalink)
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Lebell skirted on a point that I think is important. I have undergraduate degrees in both biology and chemistry as well as an MD. I view the world through the eyes of a scientist. I take lessons from thermodynamics to understand thought patterns and personal interactions and societal trends. (Maybe Harry Seldon has a point) Darwin's work is at the very center of my world view. I see absolutely no conflict between any of this and being a practicing member of the Catholic Church.

I believe that any conflict between religion and science is a percieved one that is based on a misunderstanding of either science or religion or both.

Science deals with things that CAN be known. Religion deals with things that CANNOT be known and can only be understood through faith and philosophical thought. Scientists overstep their bounds when they make statements about the lack of God. The absence of proof of his existence is not a convincing argument. Religious authorities get into trouble when they talk about things that can be known, but are not yet understood.

A good example would be the Catholic Church before Galileo. The Church stated that all we needed to know could be learned through philosophy, and Aristotle's writings were accepted and not open to discussion. For some reason, it was heresy to disagree with this Greek pagen who died hundreds of years before Christ. Along came Galileo who said, why don't we just do a little experiment. Lo and behold, the eyes that God gave him provided proof that gravity causes equal acceleration to all objects, regardless of mass. For this and other findings, he was excomunicated. The Church learned from this, and 500 years later, they officially overturned that.

As long as science and religion understand their respective roles, then they can avoid conflict. Then both are necessary to understanding our world, ourselves, and our role in our world.
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Old 04-29-2003, 03:49 AM   #33 (permalink)
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The Oxford bible defines a cult as-- any belief or religion that claims to be the ONLY way to get to heaven. there are many paths
I believe a persons life and actions will be weighed in the balance.
As for my religion I call it (my real name)ism
I was raised christion so my basic social nature is christion
My spirtual beliefs are pagan as in earth children, american indian
I believe all things were created by a group of ......(gods, people aliens?) whatever they were.
the leader of the group has been refered to as god ala zues rah and many other names.
the rest of the group also had rank early religions held them as gods, lesser gods, demi gods.
modern religions now refer to them as angels and demons.
the most important rules to me are:
do unto others as you'd have them do unto you
karma

Well thats the basic jist of it
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Old 04-29-2003, 05:00 AM   #34 (permalink)
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Quote:
Science deals with things that CAN be known. Religion deals with things that CANNOT be known and can only be understood through faith and philosophical thought.

I have a problem with the above and the christian definition of a "god".

They claim god is good, and loving, and at the same time claim he is unknowable. This raises a conflict that if god is unknowable by us humans how can we know he is good, etc.?

maybe someday i'll post how i actually feel about religion, just not today.

"The World is my country and Science is my religion."
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Old 04-29-2003, 07:04 AM   #35 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by The_Dude
maybe stupid was not the best word of choice.

i just dont see how anyone can believe in something supernatural when they have all this scientific facts pointed against them.

i cant descrbe the feeling in one word, "ignorant" partly gets it done.

all scientific facts might point against the supernatural, or maybe we just don't have anything that can test/detect it yet? just cause we can't see it doesn't mean it's not there (ex. x-rays). although i'm anti-religion and don't believe in god, i accept that i definatly could be wrong, that there is one, we just are unable to detect him (and having a "feeling" about god doesn't count, i hate when people say "i can just feel him" when asked why they believe).
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Old 04-29-2003, 07:09 AM   #36 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Easytiger
So far we've had Christians, atheists and agnostics. Are there any members of other religions here?
i'm a jew by birth, although i don't beleive at all. i consider my self to be an atheist/agnostic (somewhere in between), but many jews would consider me to be a secular jew just by the fact my mother is jewish and i had a bris and bar mitzvah.
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Old 04-29-2003, 07:49 AM   #37 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by bundy
Lebell,
forgive me for being curious... but how do you see the worlds creation?

btw, i've noticed that things are quite heated in here...this is not intended to be provocative.
Bundy,

No, that isn't provocative at all. It is simply that I don't like anyone making sweeping pronouncements and statements of fact when the truth is that we don't know. And then pointing at others and calling them "ignorant" or "stupid", well...

But to answer your question, I am pretty much lock step with greytone above. I am a scientist by training and I believe science is how to describe the origins of the universe. Our current, best theory is that there was an event we term "The Big Bang" followed by expansion and eventual development of stars and solar systems. In turn, life started on our own ball of rock and evolved into what it is now.

There is no conflict between my faith and my understanding of science. I personally am saddened that there is a large portion of Christians who cannot see this, but I do not believe they are in the majority.

Perhaps more importantly, so long as they follow the teachings of Jesus, such as "Love your neighbor as yourself", it really doesn't matter.
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Old 04-29-2003, 08:08 AM   #38 (permalink)
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I don't care about religion, but I don't have problems with others believing
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Old 04-29-2003, 11:15 AM   #39 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Simple_Min
I have a problem with the above and the christian definition of a "god".

They claim god is good, and loving, and at the same time claim he is unknowable. This raises a conflict that if god is unknowable by us humans how can we know he is good, etc.?

maybe someday i'll post how i actually feel about religion, just not today.

"The World is my country and Science is my religion."
I did not mean that God could not be known as you know a person. I meant that He exists beyond the universe He created and proof of his existance is not within the realm of science, which after all, is the study of his creation. I believe that God is the ulimate creator of the universe and that His greatest gifts to us are the consistant and predictible laws of science and our intellect to discover and then use them. His existance is for matter of faith, not knowledge. Certainly we can come to know Him through studying His creation (science) and through prayer.
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Old 04-29-2003, 11:32 AM   #40 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally posted by Mondak
Good points fellows - here is try number 2:

Searching for meaning can't really be considered a bad thing. I just tend to be frustrated by folks who look in the wrong places for meaning and don't usually express myself effectivly.

I tend to turn to nature and relationships with others to sort things out and not any kind of religion. Seems to me these things can be more reliable and can teach us far more lessons than what religion has to offer. I have seen very few if any positive outcomes and healthy relationships that are rooted in religion.
re·li·gion
  • Belief in and reverence for a supernatural power or powers regarded as creator and governor of the universe.
    A personal or institutionalized system grounded in such belief and worship.
    The life or condition of a person in a religious order.
    A set of beliefs, values, and practices based on the teachings of a spiritual leader.
    A cause, principle, or activity pursued with zeal or conscientious devotion.

I think that the last one can encompass your state of nature. Wiccans/Celtics and a number of other religions/belief models follow nature. Thus you it is not to far a stretch to say you are religious. Maybe not in traditional ones like Christianity, Hinduism, Islam...but still it is a belief model.
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